The most recent data from NAEA Propertymark has revealed that during February, agreed house sales increased to a ten year high. 74% of these sales were below the original asking price, which suggests sellers are becoming more realistic when it comes to transactions.
According to the data, sales rose to 11 per branch. This figure has not been beaten since September 2007. During January, estate agents agreed eight sales on average per branch, up from six in December.
However, the proportion of sales agreed for first-time buyers fell to 22% in February, down from 30% in January.
The number of properties available to purchase on estate agents books rose from 38 in January to 44 in February. This number is up by 26% from the figure seen last February.
Despite good sales figures only 7% of estate agents expect the proposals outlined in the Government’s Housing White Paper to be enough to sort out the issues in the housing market. 43% think the proposals will not make a difference, while 39% feel that they will have a positive impact.
Property sales hit ten-year high during February
Mark Hayward, Chief Executive at NAEA Propertymark, said: ‘The number of sales agreed reaching a 10 year high indicates the housing market is moving in the right direction. However, first-time buyers need to be a priority-the number of sales made to the group dipped in February when it should be growing.’
‘As house prices continue to rise, the market’s most vulnerable buyers are being priced out and the only way to address this is to increase housing stock. The Government have pledged yet again to build more homes, but our members aren’t feeling optimistic about the plans. If promises are kept and we see construction sites set up across the UK, we’ll be in a better position in a few years than the stark reality we will be facing if this doesn’t happen,’ he added.